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Tupolev TU-126 Moss - Early Developments

Tupolev's OKB-156 was set the task in 1958 of creating the Tu-126 DRLO aircraft, intended for the air defense system of the country. Both the aircraft itself and its radio-technical complex were created in the course of the radical improvement of entire air defense system, simultaneously with the development of the Tu-28-80 / Tu-126 distant interception complex.

Both themes were assigned by one and the same decision of the Council of Ministers of CCCP of #608-293 dated July 4, 1958 and by the order [GKAT] of #211 dated July 17. In these documents the following requirements for the aircraft and the complex were determined: duration of flight - 10-12 hours; the service ceiling - 8000-12000 m; the range of detection of aerial targets in the upper hemisphere for the purpose of the type MiG-17 - 100 km, Il-28 - 200 km, 3[M] - 300 km; the transmission distance of information - 2000 km system. The Tu-126 was required to produce to the joint flight tests in the first quarter of 1961. As the developers of radio-technical complex NII-17, OKB-373, NII-25 and NII-101 were appointed. The main enterprise for entire system was OKB-156.

Toward the end 1958 the customer gave the KB detailed TTT [tactical technical requirements], affirmed by direction of the VVS on April 9 the following year, and by command PVO - on September 2. Begining with the stage of draft designing, in course of which as one of the versions of tracking station of the air and sea situation was examined the promising RLS Ozero? ["lake"]. According to the decision, the carrier aircraft of complex became the bomber Tu-95; therefore the designers tried to squeeze all necessary equipment into it, and also into its high-altitude version Tu-96. When it was explained that this was impossible, the object of study became the Tu-116 aircraft, the construction of which provided sufficiently large airtight passenger section. However, this machine proved to be unfit for the solution of the problem presented. The studies were carried out in the division of engineering designs OKB-156 under the management of S.M. Jager. These examined the arrangement of on board entire equipment of the complex, the standard conditions of its functioning, and also the work of flying and operating equipment.

The studies concluded that the it was expedient to create the Tu-126 complex on the base of passenger aircraft Tu-114, that had considerably greater diameter and the volume of fuselage. Selection Tu-114 as the base for the creation of the DRLO aircraft immediately gave answersto many of the most important questions. First, all the equipment was placed well inside the large pressurized cabin. In the second place, the problem of cooling its separate blocks was solved. Third, it provided convenient approaches for inspection and repair, including in flight. And finally, it became possible to take onboard two complete changes of radio-crew (those, the workers with the complex and the operators it in flight) on 12 people in each, which was very desirable in view of the long duration of flight. Because of the presence of excess volumes in the fuselage, if necessary it was possible to increase the content of the mission equipment.

Nevertheless, work on the complex was not out of the stage of scientific and technical studies. There were several reasons. First of all, the service still for a while continued to insist on the use of series Tu-95, not the Tu-114, which had only just passed State tests. Furthermore, there arose large complexities with the development of radio-technical complex and its optimum arrangement on board the aircraft.

On January 30, 1960 it was affirmed that the form of the Tu-126 would be based the Tu-114, and the stage of working design began. By that time there appeared the real onboard radio location system [RLS] "Livna / Liana" - a version of well-known P-30 ground station, which was to become the basis of entire DRLO complex (from the word "Livna / Liana" and it was appropriated cipher to aircraft Tu-126 - "article L"). The general leadership on this program and on all machines of the Tu-95/114 family was exercised by N.I. Bbazenkov. Major portions of the design works on alteration Tu-114 was laid on the Kuybyshev branch of OKB-156 at plant of #18, which was led by A.I. Putilov, who introduced enormous contributions to the creation of the new aircraft. Substantial aid was rendered both by plant #18, and also other enterprises and organizations both of the Ministry of Aviation Industry [GKAT] and adjacent branches of industry.




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Page last modified: 09-07-2011 13:23:36 ZULU